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Abstract:

Microbial biofilm is an organized community of bacterial cells enclosed in a self-produced polymeric matrix that is adherent to an inert or living surface. Self-produced extra-polymeric matrix facilitates the survival of microorganisms in an adverse environment. These matrices contain polysaccharides, proteins, and extracellular microbial DNA. The biofilm can consist of one or more microbial (bacterial or fungal) species. Pathogenic bacteria in biofilms are resistant to current therapeutic regimes due to their resistant phenotype.

The efficient removal of biofilm is a big challenge in the healthcare sector especially in the living system where harsh chemicals and high temperatures cannot be used. Instead of that milder reagents such as enzymes can be of great importance as enzymes are highly selective and capable of disrupting the structural stability of the biofilm matrix. These enzymes can degrade extra polymeric substance which in turn exposes the pathogenic bacterial cells to antibiotics and subsequently host immune response can also act efficiently to clear the infectious agents. Many enzymes namely DNase I, α-amylase, protease, alginate lyase, and dispersin B have been employed to degrade biofilm. The selection of one enzyme or the combination of enzymes depends on the chemical nature of the biofilm matrix. The present article focuses on the mechanism involved in biofilm formation, types of biofilms and their destruction with the application of various enzymes of microbial origin.